Have you circled the entire month of April on your 2019 calendar while waiting patiently for more news about the final season of “Game of Thrones”? Good, because David Nutter — a frequent director on the D.B. Weiss and Damon Benioff-created series — hosted a Reddit Ask Me Anything on Tuesday, giving up some hints about Season 8.
Nutter — the director behind the Ad Council’s new short film “Rising,” which will air on Showtime this Friday — directed Episodes 1, 2 and 4 of the HBO fantasy epic’s final season. He previously directed iconic installments like Season 2’s “The Rains of Castamere,” aka The Red Wedding, and the Season 5 finale “Mother’s Mercy,” which kicked off the “Is Jon Snow dead?” debate and won Nutter an Emmy.
Here’s what we learned from Nutter’s AMA.
1. The final six episodes will be over an hour each.
“Season 8 episodes will all I think be longer than 60 minutes. They’ll be dancing around the bigger numbers, I know that for sure,” Nutter wrote. This number has yet to be confirmed by HBO, so don’t get too comfortable with it yet.
2. HBO hackers are gonna have a tough time this year.
According to Nutter, “Season 8 was a very very tight ship. It was limited viewing on many things. Not a lot of paper on the set, like none. No scripts were printed, we only used iPads and things of that nature. It was much more serious than in the past but the security has always been high. I remember in season 5 we were shooting in Croatia the walk of shame and it was a situation where we had body doubles as well — I kept thinking somebody would get photographs of this cause Dubrovnik is a rather open place — all kinds of angles to get photographs but no one did and they spent all this money on security and we got by off the hair of our chinny chin chin.”
3. Time travel is an option.
“Well, I’ll be the first to tell you that I have no time travel in my episodes. That’s the only clue I’m going to give you,” Nutter replied, when asked if there is time travel this season in general. Nice save, Dave.
4. The Red Wedding is nothing compared to the final season — and that’s coming from the guy who directed the Red Wedding.
“I remember I was shooting season 2 in Iceland and Dan took me to a restaurant in Reykjavik and we had a multi course, multi wine dinner and wanted to talk to me about directing Red Wedding trying to talk me into it,” Nutter wrote. “Well, he didn’t have to talk me into it, I was looking forward to doing it very much — and I hadn’t read the books cause I wanted to let the scripts guide me into where I was going. So I had no idea the pressure I was under except the pressure I always put myself under in order to make it great. The more I get into the project of course the more pressure I realize there really was. That was one of the ultimate moments of the series as far as some major characters are concerned and I just wanted to make it good and live up to the books. One of the most interesting things to me that surprised me the most was the responses of the audience — the YouTube videos showing people reacting to what they were watching I felt great about cause I felt like I had succeeded in doing so. As far as season 8 compared to the Red Wedding I just have to tell you – hang onto your seat cause it’s going to be special.”
5. Nutter is totally cool with the ending.
“I’m completely satisfied with how season 8 ends,” Nutter wrote. “I think that David and Dan did a tremendous job, and they took into consideration what the fans want, as well as what is right as far as storytelling is concerned. I guarantee there’s going to be lots of surprises and shocking moments, but it’s really very compelling stuff.”
6. And he worked very hard crafting the beginning.
“I’ve never directed an opening episode of GOT before until season 8 but I think it’s really important to make a splash,” Nutter wrote. “You have to reset the table, put everyone back in their place, you have to take them to their next position. But you have to entertain, that’s what’s most important.”
7. Describe it in three words
“Spectacular, inspiring, satisfying.”
8. Getting the band back together.
Nutter said the final season “was a chance for a lot of characters to work together that hadn’t worked together before” and some that “hadn’t worked together in a long time.” Make of that what you will.
P.S. No, you can’t ask him about the prequel pilot.
“I’m not involved in it. I’m not sure if I will be involved in it right now but I wish them a lot of luck.”
The eighth and final season of “Game of Thrones” premieres April 2019 on HBO.